William Blake. great architect
The English mystic poet William Blake went down in history not only because of his literary works. He also created several engravings, the most famous of which is the engraving “the Great Architect”, written in a genre close to surrealism.
Blake’s relationship with religion was somewhat special for the time. As one of the proponents of the theory of creationism, the theme of the Lord Creator was Central to the works of the Englishman. Blake presented him in a slightly different guise, often calling him Urizen.
Few people know the name of the Christian father-God. In biblical treatises, numerous synonyms are used, ranging from Yahweh, Jehovah, who is, and ending with the Almighty, the most high, the old Days, and the Great Architect.
The English name of this engraving is called “the ancient Of Days”, and the last name of this engraving was named when translated into Russian.
The main character of this incredibly famous work is the Lord Creator, but his image is unusual for the Christian representation of the time. The Great Architect vaguely resembles the Lord in Michelangelo’s painting.
He is of a powerful build, his body is beautiful and filled with great energy. The powerful muscles of the left arm and back are the same as those of ancient athletes and humanized gods in Renaissance paintings. The Architect has long gray hair and a long gray beard, so the viewer understands that the Lord is many years old, but his physical form remains the same as that of a man in the Prime of life.
William Blake placed his character in the center of an ominous red sphere, like the sun, radiating a bright yellow light into the black impenetrable darkness of the universe. Around this bright circle are located blue-black clouds. Sitting on his right leg, the Architect holds a huge compass with his left hand.
In Blake’s religious concept, the old man Is not so much a Creator as a higher entity that grants laws, order, and limits the limits of imagination and freedom.
The Lord’s features are concentrated and it is difficult to know whether he is angry or just thinking about his creation. To some extent, the Creator himself is limited to a menacing red sphere, and the fact that he outlines the laws with his left hand with a compass is not for nothing.
William Blake’s engraving is unusual for its time. It violated the usual canons in the transmission of the face of the Almighty, accepted until now in Christianity and in the perception of contemporaries bordered on heresy.
For a long time it was forgotten and rarely remembered among artists. But now it is considered one of the most famous in European culture.